Airport talks take off — Govt, consortium discuss signing of Hanthawaddy framework agreement

A conceptual design of Hanthawaddy International Airport by Yongnam CAPE-JGC Consortium.
A conceptual design of Hanthawaddy International Airport by Yongnam CAPE-JGC Consortium.

Government officials and the consortium that won the tender to build Hanthawady International Airport discussed the signing of an initial framework agreement for the project and getting ODA loans from the Japanese government.
It is hoped that the signing will take place shortly, state-run news service MNA said on Friday.
During the same meeting that took place in Nay Pyi Taw Thursday, the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) discussed the traffic allocation policy, which covers how flights will be allocated between Yangon International Airport and Hanthawady International Airport in future.
Hanthawady International Airport will become a major gateway for Myanmar and a regional aviation hub, said U Nyan Tun Aung, Union Minister for Transport, at the meeting.
A consortium of Yongnam and Changi Airport Planners and Engineering (CAPE) from Singapore and Japan’s JGC Corporation won the contract to build Hanthawaddy International Airport in Bago Region in 2014.
The airport project will be commissioned into service in 2022, four year later than its target due to issues surrounding obtaining Official Development Assistance from investors, according to DCA.
The airport project has been delayed a number of times: it was previously targeted to be completed in 2018 and then postponed to 2020. It is now expected to start operations in 2022, according to DCA. Investors are seeking ODA loans to inject into the project, which will cost around US$1.5 billion, the Deputy Director of the Department of Civil Aviation U Min Lwin told The Global New Light of Myanmar in August.
Yangon International Airport is currently being upgraded to handle an increase in foreign travelers, as arrivals to the airport are soon expected to exceed 2.7 million.
The country saw an inflow of over one million tourists in 2012, a figure that doubled in 2013 and is expected to reach 4.5 million this year. The Ministry of Hotels and Tourism is targeting more than six million arrivals in 2017.
The Hanthawaddy International Airport project is the largest of three airport projects being undertaken to accommodate the growing numbers of foreigner travellers to Myanmar. It will be constructed on more than 9,000 acres of land on the site of a World War II Japanese army airport.
Located in the Bago region about 48 miles north east of Yangon, the international airport is projected to handle up to 12 million passengers a year.
It takes around 90 minutes to travel to Bago from Yangon by car.

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